There’s a little guy who comes to our clinic for counseling. My co-worker has been seeing him for quite a while. He’s a brave kid who has experienced stuff that makes my stomach hurt to think about. He’s been working on some activities with my co-worker that led to him writing a letter to his mom. In the letter he outlined some of the stuff that happened to him… stuff that she couldn’t and therefore didn’t protect him from. He told her about some of the things he needed from her that he didn’t get and asked her this question: So what’s a mom for?
I can’t get it out of my head.
So what’s a mom for?
To protect just enough,but not too much. To discipline just enough, but not too much. To help just enough, but not too much. And who gets to determine what is just enough and not too much?
Evan cries almost every time I drop him off at the babysitter, or preschool, or Sunday School.
“But Moooomm. I just want to stay with YOOUUUU.”
And what I want to do is pick him up and take him straight home to sit with me on the couch and snuggle.
But I don’t. And I hate it.
Noah is entering the “Seriously, Mom, don’t let anyone hear you say that when I’m with you.” stage. He’s totally embarrassed by us on a regular basis. Sometimes he finds my behavior appropriate. Sometimes he doesn’t. And I hate it.
When I was little I remember telling my mom how amazing it was that when I was cold, her hands were warm. And when I was hot, her hands were cool. Now, I’m pretty sure she didn’t have the ability to alter her body temperature according to my needs. She probably stayed consistent and her hands felt comforting when I needed them to.
So maybe that’s what a mom is for.